Bloom Dementia Friendly Garden 2018
We would like to thank the Dementia: Understand Together Campaign for sponsoring the Dementia Friendly Garden Team to design a show garden for Bloom 2018. We received a hugely positive response from Bloom visitors, many of whom commented on the beauty and tranquility of the garden. The garden gave us the opportunity to raise public understanding and awareness about how to create accessible, easy to use gardens for people with dementia, enabling them to enjoy the therapeutic benefits of nature and the outdoors. An estimated 100,000+ people visited Bloom, of whom more than 12,000 visited our Moments in Time – Dementia: Understand Together Garden.
For Top tips on how to create your own dementia friendly garden, see the garden brochure here.
Some comments from garden visitors:
“Fabulous riot of colour; a great sensory experience”
“Very thought provoking garden with stunning colours – well done!”
“Fab garden my mum really loved it especially the raised beds as she is in a wheelchair”
“Love it probably the best garden here! Can’t wait to see in Arklow!”
About the Garden Design
The garden provides a supportive, beautiful, and gently stimulating place where 2 or 3 people can spend time together, immersed in nature. It is a place where conversation and togetherness can be facilitated, supported by multisensory, native planting to trigger conversation, togetherness and reminiscence. The design is underpinned by a rich evidence base of dementia friendly design and the lived experiences of people with dementia. It also symbolises the importance of community, and the power of gentle social interaction and communication.
Access to outdoor space is crucial to our health and wellbeing. If outdoors spaces are accessible, easily used, and safe, it makes it easier for all of us to go outdoors and enjoy nature, socialise, or engage in activities. For a person living with dementia, access to good quality outdoor space is particularly important as it provides a deeply therapeutic and healthful environment.
A person with dementia may experience difficulties with short-term memory, comprehension, orientation, spatial awareness and visual perception. They may also experience anxiety, stress and increased sensitivity to stimuli such as noise or glare. Age-related changes may also be an issue, such as reduced mobility, impaired vision, or hearing loss.
A garden that is based on universal and dementia friendly design principles is a particularly valuable resource for a person with dementia because it:
– Is easy to use and accessible
– Provides a therapeutic and peaceful environment
– Supports familiar activities and physical exercise
– Provides a relaxing space to engage with others
– Allows a person to experience the restorative and uplifting effect of nature
– Orientates a person to time and place
– Supports health and wellbeing through exposure to daylight and natural elements